Complete Information on Indonesia

Posts tagged ‘food’

Indonesia is a soccer country?

Many countries claim to be the motherland of soccer. England and China, for example, claim to be the country where soccer is born.

So, how about Indonesia? Does Indonesia claim to be the motherland of soccer too? No, Indonesia could never be one. However, Indonesia can be a country where the fans of soccer are born.

Why? Because Indonesia, the country where the population is so dense that it ranks fourth, has the most people who love soccer.

Indonesia really loves soccer. From youngsters to old people, they will sleep early and wake up later at night just to watch their favorite soccer team playing. This is because Indonesia has a rather big time zone difference from the time zone where the competition is held, and Indonesia people usually like the foreign soccer team.

Do you realize the business opportunity? Those many people in the stadium could not be only watching the soccer match, right? Selling foods, drinks, and cigarette is a very wise decision, as many Indonesian people are smokers. Imagine if you can sell more than 100 cigarette to those people in every soccer match in Indonesia.

(See this video below to know the risk of taking the business opportunity)

The reason of the commotion is actually simple. It is because somebody is not happy with the result of the match, thus causing the riot. Don’t you agree that it is stupid to fight over the result, and even stupider to fight even when you are not the competitor?

But, of course you don’t actually need to be there, you just need to hire someone to do the selling.

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

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Queue is not a word for Indonesian people

Queueing is normal. It happens everywhere in the world. Most people from any country would respect to the unwritten norm to queue or wait in line, and never ever take someone’s turn.

In Indonesia, however, there is no such thing like queueing. You are lucky if you can see Indonesian people queueing.
Indonesian people can often be so impatient. They don’t like to wait in line unless they are forced to, like in supermarket cashier or in a bank. Yet, often they do not queue in the bank.

This bad habit of Indonesian people really needs to stop. It is a shame to other country who sees it. In the event like the local government giving out free ration to those who need it, the rations are enough for everybody. Yet, those people still do not want to wait in line or queueing. They do not realize the danger of not queueing.

(See this video to see the danger of not waiting in line)

Yes, the kids got the danger. They are, strangely, queueing in the crowd with their parents knowing their bodies are small compared to the adults. Thus, they get pressed and kicked around in the crowd. Not to mention, there could be a thief in the crowd.
Indonesian people really need to realize the importance of queueing. It might take a longer time than not waiting in line, but it is worth the wait.

For supermarket owners, a queue can actually be very helpful for the business. People waiting in line will get bored, and thus a diversion might be useful so the customers do not get too bored while waiting. The diversion, fortunately, can be those little groceries or chocolates or candies that they don’t usually buy. Putting those things in the display near the cashier can be beneficial as they tend to buy what is on the display.

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

In Indonesia, food resembles people

Every country has its own unique food or drink which is special to the country. Like pasta and spaghetti from Italy or taco from Mexico.

For Indonesia, the Indonesian food is not only special and dear to the country, but also characterizes or resembles the people in the area.
Two examples of this are Padang food and Middle Java food.

Padang food (See information about it in this post) is known for its spiciness which resembles the Padang people or West Sumatra people who are identically seen as people who speak loudly and speak whatever is on their mind.

Rendang, a  spicy food from Padang

Rendang, a spicy food from Padang

Middle Java food, is known for its sweetness which resembles the people living there who are calm and not big-headed.

Gudeg rice, a sweet food from Middle Java

Gudeg rice, a sweet food from Middle Java

The food there is not spicy but sweet because the condiment used is not spicy. They used fruits as the condiments to give the sweet and the sour taste to the food. Like Gudeg rice, the Gudeg is made from young jack fruit which is boiled for several hours with palm sugar and coconut milk.

The most common Gudeg rice comes from Yogyakarta, and is usually sweeter, drier and reddish in because of the addition of teak leaves. What is unique about it is that it needs around three days just to make Gudeg. It can stay delicious for two days after, though.
If you are interested, you can buy this in the local restaurant in Yogyakarta for around IDR 10.000 to 20.000 ( $ US 1 to 2).

(See this video to know more about Gudeg rice)

Of course, with all the varieties spread out throughout Indonesia, various adjustments are made to the foods to fit the tongue of the local people in each area.

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

The downside of convenience stores in Indonesia

Convenience stores are now everywhere and in every corner of the world.

Indonesia can now be said as a country with a million mini markets or convenience stores, and in the future will be a country with a million malls.

They are everywhere in Indonesia. Well, they are convenient but the convenience come with the downside.
It is that the service is too rigid and formal. People come in, take what they need, go to the counter, and pay for them. There are chit chats sometimes, but it feels like it’s just for formality.
It is the same with malls. The service is no different compared to convenience stores. What is worse, they are growing rapidly in numbers. It’s not weird to see two competitive convenience store side by side.

Though, it’s not that weird to see the growth since they are quick to pick up the trend in Indonesia. The convenience stores use the concept of mini market and a cafe. Indonesian people welcome it as youngsters love to hang out with their friends.

But, the formal and rigid service really wastes the kindness and warmth of Indonesian people. You can not find this kindness in those malls or convenience stores.
If you want, you can find it in a ‘warteg‘ (warung Tegal or Tegal stalls). Basically, they sell food and drinks with a very cheap price if compared to convenience store and malls. Fried rice, instant noodle, coffee, iced sweetened tea and other kinds of food can be found there with a fair price.

It is here where you can find kindness, having a chit chat with Indonesian people. The food is not bad too, although you might need a stomachache medicine like Norit because your stomach need to get used to Indonesian food.

(See this video below about a ‘warteg‘)

Sadly, the numbers of ‘warteg‘ are decreasing. It seems Indonesian people are moving towards efficiency rather than socialization. Such a waste for Indonesian’s kindness, isn’t it?

Going to a picnic without lunch box? No worries

Going to a picnic in a mountain or simply to a park nearby must be fun, especially if we bring our own lunch boxes.

But do you know that in Indonesia, there is no habit like that? Indonesian people do not bring their own lunch box or picnic bag. Many reasons cause it, such as lazy to cook and prepare it, not enough ingredients to cook, and probably the most affecting reason of them all is that they prefer to try the local cuisine.

There are a wide variety of cuisines in Indonesia. Fried rice and fried noodle are not the authentic ones because these are from China originally. Some of the authentic ones are the Padang, Sundanese, Makassar, and Javanese food. Travelling to somewhere for a picnic means coming to a new place. Coming to a new place means different cuisine.
This difference in food encourages Indonesian people to not bring their picnic bag or lunch box, but instead taste the new and unique local cuisine.

Bandung, one of the local and international tourist spot in Indonesia, has many local cuisines to offer.

So, if you want to go to holiday or have a picnic in one of many Indonesia’s tourist spots, you don’t need to bring a lunch box. Enjoy the local cuisine, meet the new and friendly Indonesians, and meet the unique local culture.

(See this video below about a culinary destination in Bandung, West Java, Indonesia)

It’s far better than bringing your own lunch box, right?

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Street at day, restaurant at night

All streets in all countries are only streets all day long.  There is nothing except city decorations, pedestrians, beggars, and hawkers or sellers.

But do you know that in Indonesia, a normal street at day can be changed to an open-air streetside restaurant at night?
Malioboro street in Yogyakarta is one of those unique streets. The street is the center of Yogyakarta’s largest tourist district which is surrounded by many restaurants and hotels nearby.

If you are a souvenir lover, this street is your heaven. The street is crowded with small stalls selling variety of local goods like batik, silvers, leather puppets, rattan ornaments, bamboo handicrafts, blangkon, miniature of traditional vehicles, key chains, and other accessories. If you are good at bargaining, you can buy these items for a very cheap price. Try to bargain for a 50 % cut.

At night, it is another heaven for culinary lovers. A very unique culture of eating in the streetside restaurants is ‘lesehan’ or sitting on the ground.
When night comes, most of the streets will be closed by several mats, tables, and food stalls. The hygiene is not too good because it’s on the streetside, but the unique experience of eating in ‘lesehan‘ style and enjoying the street band can only be felt in Indonesia.

(See this video about the Malioboro street at day)

(And this video about Malioboro street at night, and ‘lesehan’ style)

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

Bottled tea, a “Coca Cola” for Indonesian

Drinking Coca Cola is a habit that Americans have done for years for so many occasions.  The fast food franchises such as McD or KFC or any other franchises offer Coca Cola or Sprite or Fanta as the beverages. This carbonated drink even comes with the diet version of it, as if it’s not a beverage for high-calorie food.

The similar phenomenon happens in Indonesia. Many Indonesian people drink Coca Cola or other carbonated drinks when they are eating at one of the franchises.
However, their Coca Cola is “Teh Botol”. This was started with the production of ‘Teh Botol’ by Sosro Company. ‘Teh Botol’ itself means bottled tea in English. It is a sweetened jasmine tea and it is best served cold.

The background behind its first production was how to pack a tea in a simple container, which would not spill and keep the tea fresh. Tea for Indonesian, especially for Javanese people, is as important as water, thanks to the Chinese influence. As we know, to drink tea, we have to boil the water, mix the tea with sugar, and so on until we get a fresh brewed tea. ‘Teh Botol’ is a new and innovative way to serve tea. It conveniently allows everyone to enjoy tea every time, everywhere, without having to make it first.

Becoming the first tea in a different package, ‘Teh Botol’ becomes Indonesian’s favorite beverages. Even though there are now so many brands of bottled teas, ‘Teh Botol’ is the first choice for Indonesian. From a small street vendor to a luxurious restaurant, ‘Teh Botol’ is always served in every occasion.
It is rare but if the restaurant does not sell ‘Teh Botol’, you can always ask for an iced sweet tea. The taste is not too far from the ‘Teh Botol’.

However, if you come to Indonesia, you won’t see sellers offering you ‘Teh Botol’. They will always offer you Coca Cola or beer once they see that you are a “Bule” (Caucasian). In Bali, for example, the sellers will always offer you Coca Cola. Coca Cola’s price is slightly higher than Teh Botol, so they surely will get more profit. Besides, they think that Western people, especially Americans, will like Coca Cola and beer better than a usual sweetened jasmine tea.
The sellers do not offer you the ‘Teh Botol’ because Coca Cola would not want to supply them again with Coca Cola if they ever get caught selling ‘Teh Botol’ to international tourists.

But if you are curious with how ‘Teh Botol’ would taste, you don’t have to worry. Even though you can’t come to Indonesia, you can always buy it from Indonesian people. Teh Botol is also available in other package which can be shipped easily, like tetra pack package.
Or if you are in Bali, for example, befriend an Indonesian and ask him / her to buy the unique tea taste from Indonesia.

(See this video to see how ‘Teh Botol’ is made)

Now you can see the business opportunity for tea products in Indonesia, right?

(Credits go respectfully to the rightful owner)

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